Thursday, May 04, 2006


In the repercussions post, I came down on businesses that "celebrated" the 5th of May. I was called on it, mostly because the tone of the post seemed to be anti-ethnic pride. It's not intended that way (although I do believe we're at the begininng of an economic war with latin America). That being said, here is my response:

I agree immigrants should be allowed to celebrate their heritage. Hell, I think Octoberfest shold start in September and continue until the end of Lent. There's nothing wrong with that.

But why do businesses choose to celebrate some and not others? ($$$)

Where, for instance is the business that celebrates Tet, the (Vietnamese) lunar new year? Or the businesses that celebrate Yom Kippur? I could go on, but the answer is simple: you'd have a "celebration" almost every day. So you either treat all nationalities equally and celebrate all of their holidays and rememberances, or you celebrate none of them. Focus only on American holidays, which would limit it to Thanksgiving, Arbor Day, Memorial Day, Kwanzaa (yes, we made thay one too) VE/VJ Day, Independence day, Veteran's Day, President's Day, and Chuck's Birthday.. I may have forgotten some, but the gist is that they are uniquely American holidays. Just like Hispanic/Asian/Pacific Islander/African American/ recognition months, which do celebrate diversity, we leave other people out, and negate or at least marginalize the contributions of that group to our society. We forget about the Czech, Pole, Yugoslav, Egyptian, India Indian, Mongolian, Azerbaijani, and other nationalities which all contributed to build our nation.

My solution: within those societal areas, let people and businesses celebrate their culture (like Chinese New Year in China Town, or St. Patrick's Day in the bar District). But protest businesses that "celebrate" purely for monetary gains. Why does Applebee's celebrate Cinco de Mayo, but not Ramadan? They do it because Carlos O'Kellys, or Chili's, or ennigans does it. People should be offended that their religeon of culture is being "celebrated" by a company or organization that has no idea what the meaning of that holiday.

In my ignorance, I never checked up on the big deal about 5 may. I had heard it was about Mexico's independence from Spain. That (apparently) is not the case. Go into any place celebrating it, and I'd bet that few, if any employees could tell you why 5 May is a big deal--other than their cinco celebration.


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